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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Movements of Lingcod (Ophiodon elongatus) Tagged in Carmel Bay, California


Movements of 30 lingcod (Ophiodon elongatus) tagged with acoustic transmitters were monitored over one year using an array of acoustic receivers in Carmel Bay, California. For all tagged lingcod, residence times in the array varied from 3.8 to 100%of their respective days at liberty. On average, lingcod spent 42.5 ± 17.9 (SE) consecutive days in and 8.1 ± 1.5 (SE) consecutive days out of the array. Residency significantly decreased with total length for female lingcod, while a significant relationship was not exhibited for male lingcod. Large female lingcod, at lengths > 90% maturity, spent the least amount of time in the array but were present during the fall spawning season and briefly during the spring. There was an observed decline in residency in April for males and small female lingcod, the timing of which coincided with the post nest-guarding dispersal period for males and with the return of large females into the array. Large female lingcod were recorded at significantly greater depths within the array compared to male and small female lingcod. Lingcod exhibited strong site fidelity, with tagged fish recorded on one receiver for an average of 76.8% (± 3.7 SE) of all l-hour time bins containing signals and on two adjacent receivers for 91.0% (± 4.3 SE) of all l-hour time bins. There was no significant difference in site fidelity among sexes and size classes of tagged lingcod, and patterns of movements were not found to be different among lingcod released in high, medium, and low relief habitats.

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